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Curated research library of TV news clips regarding the NSA, its oversight and privacy issues, 2009-2014

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Primary curation & research: Robin Chin, Internet Archive TV News Researcher; using TV News Archive service.

Speakers

Daniel Ellsberg
Author of
KQED 07/17/2013
Ellsberg: my concern is that the very existence of this capability chills free speech in a disastrous way. I can not see how there can be investigative reporting of the National Security community, when the identity, the location, the metadata, and really the contents of every communication between a journalist and every source, every journalist, every source is known to the executive branch. Especially one that has been prosecuting twice as many sources as any President before.
Daniel Ellsberg
Author of
KQED 07/17/2013
Ellsberg: Moreover, my even larger concern is: I don't see how democracy can survive when one branch, the executive branch, has all the personal communications of every member of congress, and every judge, every member of the judiciary, as well as the press, the fourth estate that I've just been describing. I don't see how the blackmail capability that's involved there can be -- will not be abused as it has happened in the past, including to me, by the way, and to other -- and to journalists. I think without that freedom to investigative -- bring checks and balances we won't have a real democracy. That's my concern.
Daniel Ellsberg
Author of
KQED 07/17/2013
Ellsberg: If I'm a whistleblower he’s a whistleblower (Snowden). I'm glad to hear by the way that there’s some dispute about that because in my day whistleblower was not an honorific term, it was more usually equated with traitor. So there’s been progress in that way. Now it’s something to argue about, about whether this person is really a whistleblower . And I would say there’s no question that he is and I'm confident that he is not a traitor any more than I am and I'm not or Mr. Mukasey. By the way when Mr. Mukasey says that the Russians now have access to what he has, I believe actually, what Mr. Edward Snowden has told as of today, former Senator Gordon Humphrey, he assured them that the people are wrong, he used to teach computer security to DIA and he was confident that even our own NSA was not capable of getting the secrets. I think it's mistaken to say that it was intentionally or inadvertently given that away.
Daniel Ellsberg
Author of
KQED 07/17/2013
Ellsberg: but in terms of the question of why we're spying on our friends I don't think we're spying on the Chinese in order to find Muslim terrorists may I suggest. I think that what has been revealed about the degree of listening in we're doing to the rest of the world is that that's hardly a major purpose in spying on France, or Germany or elsewhere, any more than it is here. The benefit to the government, the executive branch, it's not a benefit to us as a public. a finding out, in the case of the Chinese trade negotiations but any kind of negotiations they want, any kind of dissent, I want to say very specifically what doesn't seem to have come out. Russell Tice, a 20 year veteran not only of DIA and CIA but of the NSA, has stated, as have every other NSA whistleblower, William Binney, Thomas Drake, Kirk Weibe, have all stated that this is the tip of the iceberg, and that in fact NSA has not only has the capability but is now collecting and storing all the content of all these communications.
Daniel Ellsberg
Author of
KQED 07/17/2013
Ellsberg: I would like to see Russell Tice, William Binney, Thomas Drake and Kirk Wiebe testify before congress under oath as to their knowledge that they these programs are unconstitutional and criminal, which is why 2 of them resigned from the NSA. They have asked to testify and have been ignored by Congress. That is exactly the debate that Edward Snowden wanted to have. And it should take place in a new investigation in Congress, not in the intelligence committees which have been totally co-opted. And obviously not involving the FISA court, which is essentially a joke for how many hundreds of pages it’s put out and it’s thousands and thousands of acceptance, it's clearly a rubber-stamp court we need to change that.
Daniel Ellsberg
Author of
CNNW 01/14/2014
Tapper: The Freedom of the Press Foundation is announcing that Snowden is joining its Board of Directors. Daniel Ellsberg is a co-founder of The Freedom of the Press Foundation. You’ll of course remember him as the former U.S. military analyst who gave the infamous Pentagon Papers to "The New York Times" back in 1971. Mr. Ellsberg, thank’s so much for being here. Why has the organization decided to add Snowden to the board of directors even though he's not actually a journalist? Ellsberg: Well, I’m not a journalist either. In fact, I’m a source, actually exactly the same sort that Edward Snowden has been. And he represents the values, I think, of the Freedom of the Press Foundation, pressfreedomfoundation.org. It's essential to the first amendment, freedom of the press, and of speech.
Daniel Ellsberg
Author of
CNNW 01/14/2014
Ellsberg: You can't have investigative journalism in the foreign policy or so-called defense area without, putting it very bluntly, leaks of classified information because the secrecy system and the classification system have been so abused, always, that the information that the public needs to know to be the sovereign public and to have an influence on these policies is routinely classified no matter what abuses that conceals. So he has acted. He’s put his life on the line. I admire him, personally, very much. He’s a hero of mine. And we're very proud, actually, to have him join us on the board which also includes, by the way, journalists Laura Poitras and Glenn Greenwald who have been the channel into journalism for the revelations he's made which, in turn, have led to about half a dozen legislative proposals for reigning in (the NSA and I think he's been a very valuable citizen.)
Daniel Ellsberg
Author of
CNNW 01/14/2014
Tapper: What is your response to those who say, not all of these leaks have been good ones and not all of them have been in the name of what the Freedom of the Press Foundation stands for? Ellsberg: Look, judgment has to be exercised in the question of what the public needs to know and ought to know and what has been withheld and there may be individual aspects of that where judgments may differ. But remember, we heard these same warnings at the beginning, middle, and end of -- I should say, the beginning and middle of the prosecution of Chelsea Manning over a matter of years. Blood was on people's hands and so forth. At the end of the trial, they have not produced one scrap of evidence supporting those assertions that anything or any person has been harmed as a result of those revelations, which was the largest since the Pentagon Papers and the largest until Edward Snowden’s.
Daniel Ellsberg
Author of
CNNW 01/15/2014
Ellsberg: Now, as far as I’m aware, the government has not produced one scrap of evidence to back up the claims that he has actually harmed either procedures or people, entirely. So those have to be taken very skeptically. But I don’t rule out the possibility that there could be some items there where judgment would differ from him. By the way, he very explicitly said he didn't want his own judgment to be the last word on this. He gave it to these journalists and in turn to newspapers with very explicit warnings that they should exercise their own judgment and I think all of the items that you've been alluding to have appeared in
Daniel Ellsberg
Author of
ALJAZAM 01/17/2014
Ellsberg: What various reports have shown and the President has not contradicted at all is, they’ve been unable to come up with one terrorist event of the last eight or nine years that has been prevented by this metadata program which has been there all the time. First, they claim 57 events then they came down to 1. The 1 turned out to be, by the way, not a terrorist plot but a – some money that a cab driver sent to an alleged terrorist group at one point. That's the one thing they came up with. The President wasn't able to come up with any other example. His own review board recommended dismantling of this entire bulk program on the grounds that it was clearly unconstitutional and had no justifying effect in terms of protecting our security. He’s now talking about where to store all this data which he’s continuing to collect.
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